Kathy Carlton Willis

Kathy Carlton Willis shines the light through her communications firm as writer, publicist, coach, editor, speaker, and more. She’s built a network of industry connections and is affiliated with Advanced Writers and Speakers Association as well CLASSeminars. Her columns and book reviews have appeared online and in print. Kathy is a contributing author for The Reason We Speak, It Happened By Design: A Series of God-Incidence Stories, and Groovy Chicks’ Road Trip to Peace. She is editor and writer for The Christian Pulse devotions. She’s enjoyed stocking empty church library bookshelves to equip readers with tall “to be read” stacks, and is always on the hunt for her next favorite read. Check out her professional blog at http://kcwcomm.blogspot.com and her Website at http://www.kathycarltonwillis.com/. KCWC offers a wide range of services at every price-point, with several new services added just this month, as Kathy’s husband Russ joins the firm to double the luminosity.

Visit Your Book Matchmaker at the Library

Your one-stop CFOM resource—chock-full of how-tos and helpful hints—equipping you to get more out of your reading. Designed for the individual, libraries, and book clubs.

Isn’t it funny that when the kids go back to school, we adults seem to hunker down and get into a more normal routine as well? And that’s true whether we have schoolchildren or not! One of the ways we dive back into a fall schedule is to get back into our book reading routine. We visit the library more. And we wonder, “What do I read now?”

Let’s talk about how you can utilize your local library better. First and foremost, don’t be afraid to ask the staff for assistance. They love to match readers with good books!

I love to look at the end cap displays to see what they are promoting at any given time. Often they follow a current theme or holiday, or spotlight the most popular books. You might find books that are getting a lot of buzz, and save on your budget by borrowing a popular book rather than buying it.

Go to your favorite section of the library and figure out ways to browse that area better. Use the search feature of the computer, but also “window shop” by strolling the aisles, looking for book covers that grab your attention and back cover book descriptions that draw you in. You can’t get that from the computer search.

Then branch out and go to sections of the library you aren’t as familiar with. You might discover a new topic or author this way. The main thing is not to limit yourself—be open-minded to what words can say to you.

Libraries often provide “read alike” lists, where you can look up specific genres and authors you like, and then learn of new titles. Some of their print resources are very helpful: flyers and bookmarks with tips and information to make your trips to the library more fruitful. A side note: They also invite you to various book clubs, which you might like to join, to expand your horizon.

If you don’t want to commit to a new book because you aren’t sure you’ll like it, check it out in paperback. Often paperbacks have no checkout limits, and since they’re lightweight they won’t weigh down your book bag. You won’t feel guilty if you can’t get into one of the storylines, and by having several on the ready, you will always have a good selection from which to choose, depending on that day’s whim.

Librarians are like doctors: They need to know your book-reading preferences to help you find your next read. You take a list of questions to ask the doctor, so why not choose from this list of possible “symptoms” to share with your book physician:

• My favorite novel genre is ___________
• I like fast-paced, entertaining page-turners
• I like to dig in to a deep-thinking literary book that challenges me

• I want a main character I can relate to
• I like a multicharacter cast (or I prefer a narrow scope of characters)
• Do you have a coming-of-age story?
• Multibook series are my favorite, when characters can continue to develop or generations have their stories developed
• A quick-read for a short mind vacation
• I love a humorous book that doesn’t take itself so seriously
• I need a happy ending (or I prefer a surprise ending)

If you want a little fun to help you figure out some new books to read, there’s a site that can help. It’s not entirely accurate, but enjoyable: http://www.whatshouldireadnext.com/

Reading Assignment:

Do something different this month at your library. Here are a few ideas:
1. Visit a different library branch from your normal stomping grounds.
2. Ask the librarian for assistance rather than going it on your own.
3. Window-shop the shelves to allow the cover and back-cover copies to grab you.
4. Check out more than you think you have time to read to allow for your whims and any disconnects—you can pick up a new book from your stash if you have planned to have plenty.


Kathy CArlton Willis